View Full Version : Word of the day email PHP script - security / efficiency check

East Asia Student
March 10th, 2012, 08:08 AM
Hi all, would just like to ask for your expertise here.

I've written this PHP script which runs with cron to pick a line from a text file and send it as a "word of the day" email.


//The name of the tab-separated text file containing the vocab list
$vocab_file = "path to text file";

//Read the vocab text file
$vocab_list = file($vocab_file);

//Grab a random line from the vocab text
$todays_item_string = $vocab_list[array_rand($vocab_list)];

//Make that line into an array (tab separated)
$todays_item_array = explode("\t", $todays_item_string, 4);

//Get the details of today's word fromt that array
$word = $todays_item_array[0];
$reading = $todays_item_array[1];
$meaning = $todays_item_array[2];

//The information for the email
$recipient = "email address";
$subject = $word . " (" . $reading . "): " . $meaning;
$message = "
<p>Today's word of the day is <span style='font-size:x-large;'>" . $word . "</span> (" . $reading . "), which means " . $meaning . "</p>
<p style='font-size:7em; text-align:center;'>" . $word . "</p>
$headers = 'MIME-Version: 1.0' . "\r\n";
$headers .= 'Content-type: text/html; charset=utf-8' . "\r\n";

//Send the email with today's word
mail($recipient, $subject, $message, $headers);
?>Currently it works exactly as I wanted it to. What I'd like to ask here is:

Could it be made more efficient?
Is it secure?

Regarding the security, I run the script from a folder not in www, and the .htaccess in that folder is:

Order Deny,Allow
Deny From All
Allow From localhost
The vocab file is 644 and the script itself is 740. Any security concerns there?

I'd be really grateful for any help with this! :p